What phone/phones did you use before the Lumia 925? Which have you liked? Which have you disliked?
The only other smartphone I’ve had was the iPhone 4. I did have a Motorola Krzr long ago, but there isn’t enough room on the internet for me to fit all my praise for that phone. Despite having switched to an entirely different OS now, I didn’t have major complaints with the iPhone and it really was quite a good device. One thing I did find frustrating was the restrictiveness of iTunes and the difficulty in using my iPhone as a mobile music library shared between my computers at home and work.
Thoughts on build quality, design, and ergonomics?
The Lumia 925 is just a beautiful phone. The colorful plastic cases of other Lumia models are fun, but I really like the sleek aluminum frame on the 925. The curved edges make it very easy and comfortable to hold in a single hand. My one complaint may be nitpicky, but I noticed the non-removable plastic back of the phone isn’t firmly attached near the top and has small but noticeable give when pressed. I don’t think I would mind as much if the entire phone were plastic, but this minor defect undermines the feeling of solidness given by the glass front and aluminum frame and slightly cheapens the experience in my mind.
How is the screen? Size good or bad? Have you used it for media or video?
In my opinion, the screen is amazing. Great contrast, very sharp images. Compared to the 3.5” screen of the iPhone 4, the 925’s 4.5” screen feels enormous. I watch Netflix on it occasionally, and it’s an enjoyable experience that doesn’t feel cramped at all.
How does the phone perform? Has it locked or slowed down on you? App performance?
Overall, the 925 has performed well with a few minor scares thrown in to keep things exciting. In the first week I had it, it completely bricked on a whim. It kept trying to boot up, getting stuck on the blue Windows screen, and restarting. T-Mobile replaced it on the spot, but it was still unsettling for that to happen with a brand new phone. It’s frozen 2 other times, but nothing a soft reset couldn’t fix. Besides that, no noticed slow-down or lag when switching between apps.
Thoughts on the camera?
I’m embarrassed to admit that most of hard work Nokia put into its camera is wasted on me. I’m not much of a photographer and only take a sparing number of undemanding shots. That being said, the Lumia camera more than does the job and Nokia’s smart camera app is some neat software.
Have you had an issues using WIFI, GPS, or NFC?
No issues connecting to WiFi, and I haven’t had any instances of GPS telling me I’ve teleported to another location five miles away. I haven’t had an opportunity to play around with any NFC features, so I can’t comment on that.
How does the phone handle phone calls? Is the earpiece loud enough? Speakerphone?
I know it’s not exclusive to T-mobile Windows phones, but one feature of my 925 I’ve found to be an invaluable improvement has been the free, built-in WiFi calling. On my Verizon iPhone, I consistently had 4-5 drops each conversation while in my apartment and calls at work were next to impossible. Now, my phone will just seamlessly transition to WiFi when available, and I haven’t had a single dropped call. Awesome. In short, excellent call handling with good clarity and volume from both earpiece and speakerphone.
How are you liking Windows Phone? Have you played with any of Nokia’s collection of apps? Are there any apps or services lacking for your day to day use?
I was attracted to the minimalist style of WP8 with the live tiles before I even used it, and it’s only grown on me more with time. A pleasant surprise coming to WP8 has been the utility of the search button. Whereas on my iPhone I had individual apps for a number of search/identification tasks such as QR code reading, text translation (Word Lens), music identification (Shazam/Soundhound), and restaurant/entertainment recommendations (Yelp/Urbanspoon), I can access all those functions now from a single Swiss army knife of a button which is pretty neat. I don’t use Nokia’s music app at all, but their HERE maps are very good and their camera apps are excellent. I haven’t found any apps missing that I can’t get by without, though I hope Microsoft and Google work out their feud soon so I can get a better, official Google Voice app.
I pretty easily make it through the day with regular use, but still need to charge it each night. Speaking of which, I love the wireless charging. I didn’t mind plugging in my phone before, but now having experienced the joy of wireless, it seems like a huge hassle to plug it in anymore. I only wish the 925 didn’t need a separate sled for the wireless charging to work.
Any final thoughts? Do you enjoy using it? Does it feel like an upgrade over other phones you’ve used?
I’m definitely enjoying the Lumia 925 and the switch to WP8. I like having a consistent experience across desktop, tablet, and phone. All in all, I think it’s a great phone that’s a clear upgrade over the iPhone 4 despite a few hiccups!
I’d like to thank Tony for taking the time to share his experiences using his new Lumia, and if you’re passionate about using a gadget or technology, hit up my contact page. You could be featured in a future Real Person Review!